ABOUT CHRIST-CENTERED CURRICULUM
by Doreen Claggett
(Author of the CCC)
Christ-Centered Curriculum (CCC)—originally known as the “Christ-Centered Curriculum for Early Childhood” program—was birthed in the 1970s out of a fervent desire to take every moment captive for Christ in the Rocky Bayou Christian School (RBCS) kindergarten.1 During the early stages of CCC’s development, we had no idea that someday God would make these materials available worldwide. Consequently, it’s been a truly exciting adventure in faith to watch God unfold His plan for CCC!
From its very beginning, even before all of the initial Christ-centered phonics drill sheets were finished, word had somehow “gotten out” about what was being developed. Before long, we started receiving requests from parents who wanted us to share these phonics sheets with them. So, as pages were reproduced for RBCS on our school’s old World War II printing press, extra copies were run off for these home school families as well (sometimes only five or ten sheets at a time).
As each year passed, God, the One “who teaches man knowledge” (Ps. 94:10), further revealed His vision for these Christ-honoring materials—and thus the size and nature of the CCC program grew into three levels of phonics and math. In fact, by the late 1980s the CCC vision had grown so much in its biblical perspective and academic content that the Christ-Centered Teacher’s Manual for Early Childhood contained nearly 1200 pages! (It was SO big that when I taught my “A Woman To Be Praised” seminars the delegates often teased me by saying they had to buy a little red wagon to haul the manual around!)
But something else also grew in the late 1980s—an ever deepening burden to further help home school moms grow in their walk with the Lord, their walk with their husbands, and their walk with their children through educating them in God’s truths—spiritually, morally, and academically. And that was when God laid it on my heart to write Never Too Early (NTE).
When you first saw that title, perhaps you’re among those who have wondered: Never too early for what? The answer is simply this: It’s never too early to “pass on the faith” to God’s heritage, His precious lambs! NTE’s main focus is therefore on what I’ve been convinced is the traditional Bible-believing parental position on early childhood education.
That traditional Bible-believing position involves restoring God to His rightful place on the throne in parents’ lives first. Why is that so necessary? Before little ones ever learn to read, they’ll first “read” the lives of parents, because believers are Christ’s “letters,” known and read of all men (2 Cor. 3:2-3). What they “read” affects their concept of God, thus their spiritual, moral, and academic development. Parenting is a precious yet serious privilege. 2
First, we become disciples of God. Then we actively, constantly, and purposefully teach our children the love, discipline, and understanding of His Word. Using God’s pattern [Deut. 6:5-7], then, we can define Christian education as:
The process of God working through committed teachers using biblical methods and truthful curriculum materials to bring forth disciples who hold the biblical world view and possess the godly character and academic skills necessary to fulfill God’s calling and live for His glory.
Faith, virtue, knowledge (2 Peter 1:5)—for the mother first, then for the child.3
That was the ultimate goal and motivation behind the ongoing development and refinement of the “Christ-Centered Curriculum for Early Childhood” program. And so, by the early 1990s that huge teacher’s manual had been refined by dividing its content between Never Too Early and separate lesson plans for the various phonics and math levels. Then, in 1994, God miraculously answered eight years of faithful prayers! Because of a like vision for Christ-centered education, and that the CCC program had been simplified, God led the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) to purchase the right to print these materials for use by their Advanced Training Institute’s (ATI) home school families.4
To make a long (but wonderful) story short, from the summer of 1994 through 2008, IBLP graciously printed and warehoused the CCC for us at their large headquarters in Oak Brook, Illinois. And that made it possible for this God-initiated program to expand worldwide! For example, as part of a grass roots revival in South Korea, CCC has been published in a Korean-English version to equip their home schoolers to teach English to their children. In Jamaica, some CCC materials were used with death row inmates whose death sentences were later reversed because of dramatic heart changes. And, in south Florida, a former teacher who had taught CCC in the RBCS kindergarten “happened” to run into a South African who told her about a terrific program being used in her Christian school near Johannesburg—and it was CCC! I could go on and on with reports like this—and it’s all to God’s glory!
The next step in God’s plan for CCC occurred in April 2009 when He provided a means to print, warehouse, and ship (twice a week) out of Ft. Walton Beach, Florida—just a few miles from Rocky Bayou Christian School, where the CCC originated. For the next two years, we then kept busy adjusting to these new responsibilities.
By the fall of 2010, the amounts of Christ-Centered Curriculum materials transferred to us by IBLP were dwindling. Simultaneously, God began unfolding a vision for an even better version of Christ-Centered Phonics and Math—a streamlined, more user-friendly Home School edition. By the summer of 2011, that vision became reality and the Home School edition was officially launched. Around the same time, our web site (www.christcenteredcurriculum.com) was also given a wonderful new look! (For that we praise God—and our webmaster, Brian Durfee!)
As for any future plans, whatever the Lord may have in store, we know that He will continue to do “all things well” (Mark 7:37)! For God is GOOD!
1 Note: Rocky Bayou Christian School began in 1973 with twenty-two students in grades K-5th, four of whom were Claggetts. (The school later grew to over 800 students.) While serving as the RBCS Kindergarten Director, Doreen Claggett became God’s primary instrument in the teaching, writing, and development of the “Christ-Centered Curriculum for Early Childhood” program. Her book, Never Too Early (Click here), includes the RBCS story plus a biblical view of education.
2 Doreen Claggett, Never Too Early, p. 23.
3 Ibid, p. 25.
4 RBCS owns the copyright on the CCC. Christ-Centered Publications, which markets the CCC, was founded at RBCS for the purpose of making this program available for families not enrolled in ATI.